Risk, Detection, and Spread
EAB presents a significant threat to ash trees in North America. Unlike Asian ash species which have co-evolved with EAB in its native range, all North American ash species appear to be susceptible to EAB. Research is underway to produce risk maps for EAB based on the distribution of ash, spread rates of EAB, detections of phloem feeding insects at ports-of-entry, and other risk factors.
Early detection of new EAB infestations is critical for the success of containment and management efforts. However, early detection is exceedingly difficult, because D-shaped exit holes are much more likely to be high in the canopy than on the trunk and other external symptoms including bark cracks, dieback, and epicormic shoots are generally not evident until trees become heavily attacked. Research is underway to evaluate the use of trap trees and various trapping techniques for detection of EAB. Studies are being conducted to identify host- and insect-produced volatiles that are attractive to EAB and could be used for trapping and detection.
The area known to be infested with EAB has continued to expand because of natural dispersal and movement of infested nursery stock, firewood or logs before the EAB quarantine was established. Movement of ash material from the infested areas is now prohibited by federal quarantine regulations and subject to penalty. However, unintentional movement may still occur due to lack of awareness of the quarantine regulations. Studies are being conducted to evaluate flight capability and dispersal of EAB adults and spread of EAB populations due to natural and artificial movement. Models are being generated to illustrate and predict EAB spread.
Selected Research Studies
Last Modified: 01/08/2013